Barclays Bank has signed a seven-year, $350 million contract with EDS for the provision of managed desktop outsourcing services.
Under the agreement, EDS will provide 41,700 desktop seats across the various businesses that make up the Barclays Group, "with scope to increase this rapidly and significantly".
This agreement is one of the largest ever in UK retail banking sector. Barclays says the contract will enable it to lower its group operating costs and provide a common desktop IT service.
Seventy-seven Barclays' staff will transfer to the vendor as the bank looks to complete the standardisation ahead of a 2004 move to a new headquarter building at Canary Wharf.
David Postings of Barclays adds: "We chose to partner with EDS because they have a proven track record in delivering large scale desktop services deals. This agreement will help us achieve improved quality of services to our customers."
EDS currently manages over 3.3 million desktops worldwide, and the company's work in the global financial services industry accounted for around 14% of revenue in 2002.